Air Tightness Testing

Air permeability is a term that is used to define how well controlled the movement of air into and out of a building is.

Obviously if air is uncontrolled, then heat which you have generated is being lost. This costs you more money through excess energy usage & results in higher CO2 emissions.

Insulate right & build air-tight are two terms that consumers and builders alike are going to hear more often. Significantly improved construction standards to allow for the better fitment of higher quality & more efficient insulation coupled with closer attention to detail to close gaps in construction are being actively encouraged.

Many houses are being tested for their air leakage and as of 1st July 2009, all new houses being built must have an air leakage report showing their air permeability of the house. The result of this report is inputted into the BER calculation. A good result will have a significant positive effect on BER.

During the test, whilst the specialised software is generating a result and a report, leaks can be identified in the building fabric during a walk around with the client using a number of methods including smoke tests & thermal imaging.

When a house is being built ideally two tests will be done - Once during construction so that faults can be identified and cost effectively repaired, and once at the end of construction to get the final result for BER Certification.